Sunday, December 24, 2006

Unfinished Piece for the Piano Player

"Unfinished Piece for the Piano Player" is not so much based on a play by Anton Chekov as much a play based on Chekov's short stories and hence a very Chekovian play.

A number of characters meet over a weekend at a country estate where Mikhail Platonov, a village school teacher, undergoes an emotional crisis that is summed up best in his own words:

Oh God !

Now I am know for sure, it's enough to betray just once, just once to be unfaithful to what you believed in and what you loved and you would never get rid of the succession of betrayals and lines !

... Not that, not that, I am thirty five ! Everything's ruined !

Lermontov had already been in his grave for eight years ! Napolean was a general !
And I have done nothing in this damned life of yours. Where is my true self ? I am a good for nothing cripple! Where is my strength, my mind, my talent? A wasted life!

Oh ! You are here too, the keeper of a fire that isn't even smouldering...
but you have no choice, just like myself... a nobody ! And I am just like all of you here !
A fine masterpiece from the Soviet years, it brims with the intensity of character that only the Russians were (are?) capable of.

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